DC Council 23: Wizards vs Jazz — Sweet Sounds of a Sunday Night Victory | Wizards Blog Truth About It.net

DC Council 23: Wizards vs Jazz — Sweet Sounds of a Sunday Night Victory

Updated: December 15, 2014

Truth About It.net’s D.C. Council:
Grading Washington players from Game No. 23: Wizards vs. Jazz in D.C.;
Contributor: Adam McGinnis (@AdamMcGinnis), from the Verizon Center.



Utah Jazz



Box Score

Washington Wizards


Kris Humphries, PF

26 MIN | 1-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 2 PTS | +9

Humphries, like Marcin Gortat, was off in the first half. He was held scoreless and only had one rebound. The Utah Jazz big men were beating him to loose balls. Humphries just never got it going—this was one of the worst performances from him in a long time.

Paul Pierce, SF

25 MIN | 5-8 FG | 4-4 FT | 0 REB | 1 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 15 PTS | +12

Pierce produced 15 points on only eight shots and finished tied for the best plus/minus on the team (+12). It is amazing to see a guy his age get to the rim so often. Defenders still fall for his fakes and he somehow finds a way to get off his shot attempt on his drives.

My favorite part of Wizards games now is when Pierce begins to get the home crowd pumped up from the bench. He will turn around and wave his arms up and down, demanding the fans get into it. Like Hulk Hogan, Pierce will put his hand to ear, requesting more noise. Pierce wanted Washington to become a great home team, and a 12-2 record at the Verizon Center this season suggests that his wish is being granted.

Vines: Truth vs Trey Burke; Found by Wall.

Marcin Gortat, C

31 MIN | 2-8 FG | 1-2 FT | 7 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 5 PTS | +12

It was a forgettable first half for Gortat. Easy passes were slipping out of his hands and the shot-blocking length of Jazz center Rudy Gobert bothered him on offense. His stat line at halftime was ugly: one point, 0-for-3 on field goals, one rebound, and three turnovers. Ouch.

Marcin picked up his game in the third quarter, corralling six rebounds and putting in two baskets, helping Washington pull away from Utah.

John Wall, PG

36 MIN | 8-15 FG | 0-2 FT | 6 REB | 8 AST | 5 STL | 3 BLK | 5 TO | 16 PTS | +5

There was potential for a John Wall hangover from Friday night’s excellent performance against Chris Paul and the Clippers. The star point guard quickly doused that possibility with another solid overall outing versus Utah. Wall found shooters, blocked shots, harassed ball handlers, made smooth jumpers, and attacked the rim. In the decisive third quarter, Wall led the charge with his steals and transition attacks. Once again, he was the best player on the basketball court.

In four-plus years covering Wall, I have never seen his confidence higher than it is right now. It is quite remarkable how there still seems to be room for improvement. Feel lucky, D.C., because this kid is becoming a special one.

Vines: Jumper on the left for a change; Wall vs Exum; Frozen Gobert.

Bradley Beal, SG

37 MIN | 9-17 FG | 2-2 FT | 7 REB | 4 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 22 PTS | +9

I have been somewhat harsh on Beal’s play over the past few weeks. His offensive struggles, due to mostly poor shot selection, led to terrible body language—and so much pouting. After Washington’s thrilling double-overtime victory over Boston, he appeared to not even be celebrating with his teammates, likely because he had a bad game. I also have stressed some patience in regards to Beal getting back to prime form after missing nearly two months to injury. And any criticism of Big Panda must always include the context that he is only 21 years old.

For the second straight game, Beal was outstanding and led the team in scoring. He went at the rim, created space on pretty step-back moves, played tough defense, and made wise decisions on offense. He even chipped in with seven rebounds and four assists. He still fell victim to a couple of lazy mid-range jumpers, but overall his shot selection was superb. Over the weekend, Beal averaged 25.5 points per game in both Wizards triumphs.

Vines: Big Panda gets fast; 3-pointer; Panda deuce.

Nene Hilario, PF

23 MIN | 5-8 FG | 0-1 FT | 6 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 10 PTS | 0

The Brazilian came off the bench again and made his presence felt with a couple of vicious dunks. His defense was superb and the debate of whether he should move back into the starting line up will probably fire up this week. Washington is winning with Humphries starting, so Wittman will likely keep things the same. I would rather have Nene start because the Nene and Gortat combo is a defensive vise grip in the paint. The more minutes those to two have together, the better. (Although Seraphin seems to play better when paired up with Nene.) Anyway, this is a great dilemma to deal with compared to years’ past.

Vine: #NeneJams.

Otto Porter Jr., SF

11 MIN | 1-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 2 PTS | 0

Porter made a nice cut to the basket once and that was about it. Sometimes you rarely notice he is out there, which might make him the most likely candidate to see his burn decreased once Martell Webster is ready for action.

Rasual Butler, SF

23 MIN | 3-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 7 PTS | -3

#RasualSundays are a thing these days, and Butler drained his first shot attempt, a corner 3 ball. Butler’s contributions are becoming so routine that you stop commenting on the surprise nature of it all.

Vine: Floater on Sunday.

Kevin Seraphin, C

16 MIN | 2-7 FG | 0-1 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | -2

This was a special night for Kevin, as he got to play against his french buddy Rudy Gobert and his BFF, Trevor Booker. It was a relatively quiet game for #KSLife, but he did finish an and-1 on Booker, which he made sure to remind everyone about after the game.

Vine: #KSlife gets bouncy.

Andre Miller, PG

12 MIN | 5-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 10 PTS | +4

Early season suggestions that Andre Miller was a potential problem have not come to fruition and the Professor has been an undervalued asset. On the season, Miller is shooting an eye-popping 64 percent from the field with 75 assists and only 17 turnovers. His trademark post game continues to be a major offensive weapon, and he is still embarrassing players almost every week like he did against Utah rookie Joe Ingles on Sunday night. No one should ever forget about Dre.

Vines: Lesson 1; Lesson 2.


  1. Utah rookie Dante Exum told me before the game that he looks up to John Wall and wants to be one of the top point guards in the league like him. Exum had a pink backpack from the movie “Frozen” and said that Jazz forward Enes Kanter makes him wear it. His other rookie hazing duties includes singing happy birthday to teammates.
  2. Washington Capitals star Alex Ovechkin was at the game with his teammate Evgeny Kuznetsov. Ovi was in a John Wall jersey and Kuznetsov sported a Paul Pierce one. There were plenty of pictures of the Caps and Wiz players together after the victory.
  3. Before the game, Kevin Seraphin and Garrett Temple conversed with their former teammate Trevor Booker. Temple had jokes for Booker’s new hair style. Booker later told me later that Wall said he grew his hair out in order to hide his bald spot.
  4. A middle school choir sang the national anthem, but before the game, a few of the girls from the school kept yelling Marcin Gortat’s name as he practiced his moves. Finally, the Polish big man acknowledged them with a wave, which immediately sent the youngsters into screams of joy.
  5. Washington’s reserves outscored the Jazz’s second unit, 43-17. The Wizards are now 11 games above .500 (17-6) for the first time since April 5, 2005.
  6. There was a fan in a Paul Pierce Celtics jersey sitting near the end of Wizards bench and cheering for Washington. The weirdness of Pierce in Wiz gear has begun to wane, but people rooting for the Wizards in Celtics stuff will always be strange. No confirmation if the fan ended up scoring some Pierce game-worn memorabilia like this fan did.
  7. Booker had the money quote of the evening about being jeered by the Wizards’ crowd (more on this story in another post):

    “I thought they were just booing me and then I thought about it—it was the fourth quarter, I was on the free-throw line. They wanted me to miss two so they could get a (free Chick-Fil-A) sandwich. I hope that was all it was anyway.”


Via Gortat IG: mgortat13


Wiz Players at Pierce’s Toy Drive on Saturday night
Via @KrisHumphries


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Adam McGinnis
Reporter / Writer / Media at TAI
Adam is a bro from the Midwest who's been bopping around the District of Columbia for years. He's down with a range of sports, etc. and has covered the Washington Wizards for TAI since 2010.